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    • Join Date: Mar 2009
    • Posts: 1
    #1

    Smile The difference between "under" and "below"

    Dear Sir/Mam.


    When we say "under 16 years old," is it OK to exchange "under" with "below"? I'm confused the difference between these 2 words.

    Thank you for your help.

    Best,

    Jessica

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      • English
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      • United States
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    • Join Date: Feb 2009
    • Posts: 455
    #2

    Re: The difference between "under" and "below"

    Quote Originally Posted by starlegend View Post
    Dear Sir/Mam.


    When we say "under 16 years old," is it OK to exchange "under" with "below"? I'm confused the difference between these 2 words.

    Thank you for your help.

    Best,

    Jessica
    Hi Jessica,

    Though the words under and below are synonymous, the two words do have slightly differing connotations: you will find that below is used to refer to a relative lower position of place or rank.

    Though one could say "below the age of xx," it really doesn't sound natural -- at least not to my American sensibilities. With the word age, you'll definitely want to use under. In fact, the compound word underage combines the two.

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